Tuesday , September 26 2023
Inland Empire Business News September 2014.001
Inland Empire Business News September 2014.001

U.S. adds jobs, unemployment falls to 5.6 percent

The U.S. economy added 252,000 jobs in December, ending the country’s best year for hiring in 15 years.

Unemployment dropped to 5.6 percent – down from 5.8 percent in November – the lowest jobless rate since 2008, according to data released Friday by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Also, 50,000 more jobs combined were added to the department’s October and November reports, the first reports having been underestimated.

“I think it’s a predictable report,”, said Chris Thornberg, founding partner with Beacon Economics LLC in Los Angeles. “ It shows the strong growth of the economy as we head into 2015. It’s exactly what we expected to see.”

The next phase of the recovery will be wage growth but that hasn’t happened yet. Average hourly pay fell five cents in December, and there’s reason to suspect that the unemployment rate dropped in part because many long-term unemployed stopped looking for work.

People who stop looking for work are no longer counted as unemployed.

However, the number of people who have been out of work for six months or more fell to 27 percent in December, and the number working part-time who want to work full-time declined to 12 percent, according to the labor department.

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